03/04/10 - Open Cobalt Alpha to be featured at 2010 Boston iED Summit

posted Mar 4, 2010, 8:08 PM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Mar 4, 2010, 8:13 PM ]

The Open Cobalt Alpha will be featured in a keynote presentation by Julian Lombardi and Mark McCahill on the first day of the 2010 Boston Immersive Education Initiative Summit (April 23rd-25th).  The event is made possible through special arrangement with the Woods College of Advancing Studies at Boston College and is organized specifically for educators, researchers, and school/university administrators.  The three-day conference consists of presentations, panel discussions, break-out sessions and workshops that provide attendees with an in-depth overview of immersive learning platforms and technologies. The Summit will feature new and emerging virtual worlds, learning games, educational simulations, mixed/augmented reality, and related teaching tools, techniques, technologies, standards and best practices. The Education Grid, Open Cobalt Alpha, Project Wonderland, Second Life, realXtend, and Open Simulator are among the immersive learning technologies that will be featured. Members of the Initiative's open file format, library, psychology, mixed reality, and K-12 (kindergarten through high school) groups will also give special presentations and workshops.  There will also be a hands-on workshop featuring Open Cobalt Alpha.

02/14/10 - Open Cobalt featured in Chronicle of Higher Education

posted Feb 28, 2010, 11:56 AM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Feb 28, 2010, 12:08 PM ]

Open Cobalt was featured today in an article entitled "After Frustrations in Second Life, Colleges Look to New Virtual Worlds" appearing in the Chronicle of Higher Education.  The article, by Jeffrey R. Young discussed the growing disenchantment with commercial virtual world platforms and the efforts underway to build open and flexible alternatives.

09/02/09 - Duke's Julian Lombardi receives National Science Foundation award to advance Open Cobalt User Interface

posted Feb 26, 2010, 4:14 AM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Mar 5, 2010, 5:16 AM ]

Duke University computer scientist, Julian Lombardi, has received a second NSF Grant to advance "intelligent Interfaces for Managing User Experience in Hypermedia-Enabled Virtual Workspaces". This research seeks to 1) provide insights into optimal GUI approaches for managing content and connectivity within virtual workspaces and advance open source virtual world software technologies that can serve as the basis for future research experimentation within virtual workspaces.

12/15/08 - Open Cobalt imports Google 3D Warehouse (KMZ 4) models

posted Feb 26, 2010, 4:11 AM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Mar 5, 2010, 5:12 AM ]

Open Cobalt now supports the Keyhole Markup Language (KML or KMZ) file format for three dimensional content. KMZ is an XML-based language schema for expressing geographic annotations and visualizations in 3D space. Because of this, it is now possible for people to easily create content for Open Cobalt by using Google's free and easy-to-use SketchUp which includes integrated tools for uploading content to Google Earth and to the Google 3D Warehouse, a repository of models created in SketchUp.  This also makes it possible for users to download content from Google's 3D warehouse and then import it directly into Open Cobalt.

11/01/2008 - VNC sessions possible in Open Cobalt

posted Feb 26, 2010, 3:57 AM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Mar 5, 2010, 5:14 AM ]

Open Cobalt now uses Virtual Network Computing (VNC) via the XRFB protocol to remotely control other computers from within virtual workspaces. This allows people to collaboratively work on third-party applications from within Open Cobalt workspaces.  It even allows group access to OS desktops from within worlds.

09/22/08 - Elizabeth Wendland joins Duke University as collaborative systems developer

posted Feb 25, 2010, 8:26 PM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Feb 26, 2010, 4:01 AM ]

Elizabeth Wendland, former Croquet lead at the University of Minnesota, has joined the Duke University Office of Information Technology as a collaborative systems developer.  Elizabeth will be working to develop enterprise level support for secure collaborative tools and environments that will integrate with Cobalt to provide robust, secure, and richly featured virtual worlds for education.

09/01/08 - John Dougan joins Duke University as Open Cobalt development lead

posted Feb 25, 2010, 8:24 PM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Feb 26, 2010, 4:02 AM ]

John Dougan, experienced Croquet developer has joined Julian Lombardi’s software development team at Duke’s Department of Computer Science as a lead developer for the NSF and Andrew W. Mellon funded effort to develop an open source virtual world browser based on Croquet technology.

06/01/08 - Duke Receives NSF Award to Support Open Cobalt Application Development

posted Feb 25, 2010, 8:19 PM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Feb 25, 2010, 8:23 PM ]

Duke University computer scientist, Julian Lombardi, has received an NSF Small Grant for Exploratory Research in the amount of $200K to advance "An Open and Scalable Croquet-Based Collaboration Infrastructure for Support of 3-D Simulation-Based Research and Education.

03/05/08 - Open Cobalt application made available for community-based development

posted Feb 25, 2010, 8:18 PM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Feb 25, 2010, 8:19 PM ]

Open Cobalt is an emerging open source and multi-platform metaverse browser and toolkit application being built using the open source Croquet SDK. A pre-alpha build of the Cobalt application is being made freely available to the emerging virtual worlds community by Duke University and its partners. The development partners which include The University of Minnesota, The University of British Columbia, Duke University, Wake Forest University, North Carolina State University, and The University of North Carolina among others. The intent of this effort is to foster a viable broad-based community software development effort leading to secure and open source virtual world technologies supporting the needs of education and research.

01/12/08 - Immersive Education Initiative Selects Open Cobalt as Next Generation Immersive Education Platform

posted Feb 25, 2010, 8:17 PM by Julian Lombardi   [ updated Feb 25, 2010, 8:18 PM ]

On January 12th, it was announced at The Boston Media-Grid Summit that the Immersive Education Initiative has selected Open Cobalt as one of three official "next generation" immersive education platforms. The Immersive Education Initiative is an international collaboration of universities, colleges, research institutes, consortia companies, and foundations that are working together to define and develop open standards, best practices, platforms, and communities of support for virtual reality and game-based learning and training systems. The Initiative will now direct both funding and programming resources towards the development and deployment of open source Cobalt technologies and open source Cobalt-based educational applications. Selection criteria for this important honor included the following: 1) support for the Windows and Macintosh operating systems; 2) availability as open source code; 3) vendor-neutral client and server architectures (no vendor lock-in); 4) stable and reliable runtime implementations; 5) integrated text chat and voice chat; 6) high resolution graphics; 7) multi-user support for collaboration; 8) highly customizable avatars that support high resolution graphics and body animation (gestures); and 9) support for user-created content. The other two immersive education platforms selected were Sun's open source Project Wonderland client and the now open sourced Second Life client.

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